Discovery Communications takes majority stake in OWN, cable network the item co-owns with Oprah Winfrey

Discovery Communications will become the majority owner of OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.

The company said on Monday the item will increase its ownership stake in Oprah Winfrey’s network to 70 percent. OWN, which launched in 2011, was previously a joint venture between Discovery along with also Winfrey’s Harpo, Inc.

“Ten years ago, Oprah along with also I began to imagine what a network, inspired by her vision along with also values, could mean to viewers across the U.S.,” Discovery president along with also CEO David Zaslav said in a statement. “In an increasingly crowded landscape, OWN has emerged as the leading destination for African-American women along with also one of the strongest superfan brands across all screens along with also services,” he said.

Discovery paid $70 million to acquire one more 24.5 percent stake in OWN, after factoring in net debt. Harpo, Inc. will remain a minority investor, along with also Winfrey will remain CEO of OWN with an exclusivity commitment through 2025.

OWN’s majority stake fits with Discovery’s plans to boost its leverage with pay TV operators along with also potentially launch its own direct-to-consumer streaming service by acquiring more content. the item recently acquired Scripps Networks in July in a cash-along with also-stock deal worth $14.6 billion. Together, Discovery along with also Scripps content reach 20 percent of U.S. 25 to 54-year-olds. Adding OWN to the mix could boost African-American viewership numbers.

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